The Force Awakened….

The-Force-Awakens-PosterWell friends, I finally watched The Force Awakens (TFA) January 3rd.  In a nutshell it was good.  It wasn’t anything like I expected and none of my theories were correct but alas, I expected that.

Unfortunately, much like The Phantom Menace, I left the theatre with more questions than answers, as did many fans. There were a lot of gaps and there were a lot of things that just didn’t really seem to fit.

Was it better the The Empire Strikes Back? In my opinion, no, although it came close.  It certainly was entertaining enough to help me forget about the prequels! I did like JJ Abrams style and thank god he backed off on all the “lens flare” effects…in the Star Trek movies that he helmed, that effect drove me nuts!

To add to my thoughts on TFA, I was disappointed with a few things. (Spoliers) I didn’t like the fact that Luke shows up at the very end of the movie.  I didn’t like the fact that we didn’t get to see much of R2 and 3PO.  The villain was a whiny baby IMHO.  Captain Phasma seemed to be more of an extra than anything else.  Who the fuck is Snoke?  Han gets wasted in a very shitty way and the response from his lifelong friend Chewbacca is laughable and poorly handled by writers JJ Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan.

And finally, I totally agree with George Lucas.  This was a retro film. Although it pays homage to Star Wars of old, it seemed a bit recycled: Another desert planet, another ice planet, another rebellion, another Death Star type weapon. another scenario where everyone is looking for a small droid, another young person dreaming of a different life then being thrust into a whole new world, another villain robed all in black wearing a mask and sporting a red lightsaber, another cantina scene full of assorted aliens, another large “projected” version of the “leader” of the bad dudes, the list goes on.

Don’t get me wrong.  I thoroughly enjoyed this film because I am old school Original Trilogy so it brought back a lot of fond memories. Having said this I hope, like The Empire Strikes Back, the second installment is much better…Goodbye, General Solo…you will be missed.

 

If Episode VII sucks…it’s not my fault.

glIn a recent interview Star Wars creator George Lucas was quoted as saying that if the new Star Wars movie sucks that he won’t be responsible.  Apparently none of the writing credits will go to Lucas this time.  Even though he had written a draft for Episode VII a few years earlier (and subsequently sold it along with his company to Disney), it was not used for Episode VII.

So I guess it’s really official…other than acting as a creative consultant, Lucas has absolutely no input in what happens to his epic space saga.  Sadly this is what happens when you sell everything! Mind you, he got married a few years ago so it’s probably no coincidence that he’s living the good life with his younger wife, Melody Hobson and his newly born daughter (2013).

In a way it’s probably a good thing for Mr. Lucas.  Just think, he has either written and/or directed every Star Wars film (and rightly so) until now so it may be a nice treat for him.  Why?  Because when he sees Episode VII in the theatre (likely his own) he will, for the first time, be seeing a Star Wars film that he did not create or have any input in.  He finally gets to “watch” !

I can’t wait until “The Force Awakens”…

It’s official…Star Wars Episode VII has a title: “The Force Awakens“.  It sounds cool.  Certainly better than “Attack of the Clones” and ultimately a better film, or so we hope.  A lot of it has been surprisingly kept secret with of course the odd picture surfacing here and there. One of my favorites is what I like to call the “SpaceHog”.spacehogApparently it’s a full sized creature that takes several men to operate it, much like Jabba the Hut was in Return of the Jedi.  Apparently JJ Abrams wanted to use a great deal of physical effects like in days of old rather than relying too heavily on blue/green screen computer animation. I for one hope that a return to old school visual effects will make the film one of the best in the series.  After all the fan favorite, The Empire Strikes Back was directed by someone (Irvin Kershner) other than George  Lucas so there is still hope that this film will be like Star Wars of old.  I can’t wait until The Force Awakens!

A Long, Long, Long, Long time ago……

Star-Wars-VIII still can’t get over it.  Although Episode VII is set 30 years after Return of the Jedi, I still can’t get over the fact that we will see Luke, Han and Leia return to the Star Wars Universe. Or should I say, Mark, Harrison & Carrie?   I have to cringe at what the possible outcomes will be having these three re-unite to play characters that they left behind literally 30 years ago.

Let’s face it, Harrison Ford might still be able to pull off Han Solo, but Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamil have done very little acting in the last 30 years.  Personally I am not convinced they can pull it off.

Most of the “treatments” of episodes VII thru IX are not anywhere close to what Lucas had envisioned (today anyway), but for readers interest I’ll post them here.  I still can’t see beyond the aged characters….

  • Episode VII would begin roughly 20 (or perhaps 30-40) years after the end of Return of the Jedi (according to Lucas in 1980 and 1982).
  • R2-D2 and C-3PO would be the only characters who might continue through all nine films (Lucas in 1980, 1981 and 1983).
  • The trilogy would deal with the rebuilding of the Republic (Lucas in 1980).
  • “It’s like a saga, the story of a group of people, a family” (Lucas in 1980).
  • The focus would be on Luke Skywalker’s journey to becoming the premier Jedi knight, with Luke’s sister (who was not Leia) appearing in Episode VIII, and the first appearance of the Emperor, and Luke’s ultimate confrontation with him, in Episode IX (a storyline as planned pre-1980, according to A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back producer Gary Kurtz).
  • Luke would have a romantic relationship with a female love interest (Lucas in 1988).
  • The main theme of the trilogy would be moral and philosophical problems, such as the necessity for moral choices and the wisdom needed to distinguish right from wrong, justice, confrontation, and passing on what you have learned (Lucas in 1983 and 1989).
  • The key actors, Hamill as Luke Skywalker, Ford as Han Solo, and Fisher as Princess Leia, would appear, in their 60s or 70s (Lucas in 1983).
  • In Episode IX, Hamill would cameo, “like Obi-Wan handing the lightsaber down to the next new hope” (according to Hamill, in 2004).
  • “The other one — what happens to Luke afterward — is much more ethereal. I have a tiny notebook full of notes on that. If I’m really ambitious, I could proceed to figure out what would have happened to Luke” (Lucas in 1980).

Christmas with Chewy

Wow, even I have to admit when I saw this Christmas special a long time ago in a household far, far away even I wasn’t impressed.  I was only a kid when it aired and I can honestly say, “WOW” has my taste in entertainment ever changed! Princess Leia is singing!

This has got to be the corniest shows I think I have seen in decades and realize that the only reason I watched it was because it was Star Wars. There are a few cameos from the Droids, Han and Luke and even the Cantina band but it’s really poorly done.  If there was ever any doubt, people should really not watch this video if they haven’t already seen Star Wars and if they have, have an open mind. Even George Lucas admits its one of those things he wish he could forget and prays that every last copied gets destroyed.

All I can say is WOW…. now that’s worse than Episode 1 the Phantom Menace!

Wookies are known to do that

chewieBe very tall that is.  Rumour is swirling that there is a casting call for an individual that is 7’2″ – 7’6″ and not too stocky (not thin but not muscular either) for a role in an upcoming as yet untitled feature film being produced by Lucasfilm and Bad Robot (JJ Abrams production company).

Apparently Peter Mayhew, the original and IMHO the only actor to play Chewbacca in 4 of the 6 Star Wars films, is said to be suffering from health issues (legs mostly) and will not be recast as the favorite “walking carpet” in the upcoming Episode VII.

In a way it’s kind of sad.  I remember reading an article once about how excited he was to reprise his role as everyone’s  favorite co-pilot of the Millennium Falcon in Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.  Even though the part was very small, George Lucas still considered the aging Englishman as the person to fill the fuzzball suit one more time.

Personally knowing that it won’t be the same actor portraying a character that died a hero’s death in the Yuuzhan Vong War. in the expanded universe novels will be just one more reason why I hope Disney doesn’t destroy Star Wars in favor of capitalism.

Does this mean Anthony Daniels (C-3PO) will be the only Star Wars Alumni to be cast in every film? All I can say is: Peter, get well soon! We need you, Chewie!

Han Solo was a Lizard

theStarWarsMany diehard fans will agree that the original draft of Star Wars was a bit “off-the wall”, to say the least.  It is good to see that George Lucas has decided to release the original first draft to Dark Horse Comics.  Dark Horse has made the original draft into an 8 part comic book series due out in September 2013.

Reading about the adventures of Annikin Starkiller and General Luke Skywalker will definitely be interesting, considering in this draft, Han Solo is a 7 foot lizard and Darth Vader only has one scar on his head/face!

Hopefully I’ll get a chance to buy these before they sellout, which is most likely going to happen within a matter of hours.  I think I’ll mark my place in line now and avoid the rush!